If I Die in a Combat Zone

at basic training, blyton orders obrien and erik to go on night gaurd duty as punishment. the two men think they have outsmarted the drill sergeant but then wonder if he was victorious in the end because they did what?

if i die in a combat zone

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They ended up being relieved by a young kid they ratted on for making a phone call. It made them look soft. Thus, Blyton succeeds in making them look bad.

They reported another trainee to the Drill Sergeant for making unauthorized use of the pay phone, which caused him to have to take the guard duty they had been assigned as punishment. What bothered O'Brien about this was that he had smugly thought he was successfully resisting the Army's attempts to make a soldier of him by being aloof from the other trainees and being aware of how the training and trainers were attempting to re-frame his thinking and modify his behavior. In this instance, he realized, he had done exactly what was desired of the developing soldier by being a cooperating member of the self-correcting system of discipline, wherein the soldiers adopt the role of "policing" themselves and one another. In his view, this was a sign that the Army had defeated his defenses, and that he was no better than the other "boors" and "brutes" against whom he compared his sense of educated, ciivilized, sense of moral superiority. He had become "one of them". This was a real let-down for him, as well as a powerful insight.


If I Die In A Combat Zone...